What a wonderful fairy tale this is! It’s one of those rare stories that can be read by children as well as adults, and each age group will get their own kind of message from it. The story is full of gentle humor, tenderness, and the kind of sensitivity a lot of misunderstood children need in their lives. It quietly yet powerfully makes its points about gender identity and the hurtful effect of gender stereotyping on those who don’t fit the mold. I loved every single page and hope that you will read it and/or give it to the children (and adults) in your life who might find its message helpful and supportive.
Luca, the narrator, is an eight-year-old boy who is very confused about a few things. Like how adults know which toys are for boys and which are for boys. Like why Santa Claus keeps mixing up his presents and giving him things he never wanted, while the white skates for ice skating and the sports shoes with gold stripes on them never make an appearance. He figures Santa may be old and beginning to be forgetful, like Luca’ grandparents, and decides to write a second letter this year: this one addressed to the magical singer Cher. What happens next is a true fairy tale and was s touching it left tears in my eyes. Beautiful!
If you like stories full of magic that carry a message of hope, if a Christmas-y fairy tale written for misunderstood little boys and girls everywhere sounds interesting, or if you are in need of some cheering up yourself, then you will probably like this short story. I think it’s very powerful, and it touched me deeply.
Genre: Queer/Contemporary/Fantasy/Magic/Fairy Tales/Children/Holiday/Fiction
Reviewed by: Serena Yates on 29-November-2015